How to entertain your family during Homecoming Weekend


Jeannette Yan

The Miles C. Hartley Selections Garden on Oct. 13. The garden is a gift from family and friends of alumnus and former UI faculty member Miles C. Hartley. It is part of the Arboretum on the south side of campus. Take your family to visit this weekend and enjoy Illinois’ natural beauty.

By Molly Zupan, Contributing Writer

Homecoming is one of the biggest events of the school year. Throughout the week of the annual Homecoming celebration, campus is packed with excitement, school spirit and events.

Homecoming is a big attraction for family or friends to visit, but don’t worry, there are plenty of things to keep them busy. Below are a few places and events to consider taking your loved ones for food and drinks, sights and sounds and for a hint of our campus tradition during Homecoming week.

Homecoming events

On Friday, the Homecoming Parade will be held at 6 p.m. on a parade route around campus. For the classic Homecoming experience, take your loved ones to the football game at Memorial Stadium on Saturday.

The Illini will take on the University of Wisconsin-Madison Badgers at 11 a.m. on Saturday. Later that day, the women’s volleyball team will be going up against Penn State at 7 p.m. in Huff Hall. Remind your visitors to bring their Illinois gear. Don’t forget to buy tickets ahead of time; they go fast.

Outdoor fun

If the weather allows it, bring your family and friends to the arboretum, Japan House or Idea Garden. Located at the southeastern part of campus, on the corner of Lincoln and Florida avenues, this area is full of life, growth and natural beauty. It is a great place to take a walk, enjoy the outdoors and escape the craziness of Homecoming.

Within the southwestern part of Champaign, a local apple orchard and pumpkin patch provides fall festivities. Curtis Orchard & Pumpkin Patch is a family-owned apple orchard that has been an attraction for local families for decades. It’s a great place for family fun and fall seasonal produce such as apples, honey and squash. Be sure to end the trip with the orchard’s famous apple donuts and cider.

Local food and drink

Ditch dorm food and apartment cooking and head to Green Street or downtown Champaign for something yummy and affordable.

Some popular locations include: Black Dog Smoke & Ale House, Legend’s Bar & Grill, Ko Fusion, Joe’s Brewery, Seven Saints, Kohinoor, Farren’s Pub and Eatery, Murphy’s Pub and Wedge Bar.

Campus attractions

Become a tour guide for the weekend and show off the campus. Bring your family or friends to the places you love, such as your favorite cafe or study spot. Give them a taste of student life at the University.

Phone calls, texts and pictures don’t do this campus justice. Homecoming Weekend is a great time to show your loved ones what you’re up to and showcase your reason for choosing Illinois.

Molly is a sophomore in FAA.

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